Billionaire To Take $20 Million Sub To Site Of OceanGate Implosion

By Jason Hall

May 28, 2024

Photo: Getty Images

An Ohio billionaire revealed plans to take a $20 million submersible to explore wreckage of the Titanic after the fatal OceanGate exploration that took place last year.

Real estate investor Larry Connor revealed his partnership with Triton Submarines co-founder Patrick Lahey to take a two-person submersible more than 12,400 feet below sea level in an effort to prove that the goal of the doomed OceanGate mission can be achieved.

“I want to show people worldwide that while the ocean is extremely powerful, it can be wonderful and enjoyable and really kind of life-changing if you go about it the right way,” Connor told the Wall Street Journal.

The vessel, designed by Lahey and dubbed 'the Triton 4000/2 Abyssal Explorer,' is capable of carrying out the voyage repeatedly, according to Connor.

“Patrick has been thinking about and designing this for over a decade. But we didn’t have the materials and technology,” Connor said. “You couldn’t have built this sub five years ago.”

OceanGate CEO Stockton Rush and all four others onboard Titan submersible were killed in an imploded last June. The submersible -- which differs from a submarine as it relies on outside support, rather than renewing its own power and breathing air -- offered passengers an up-close experience to explore the Titanic wreckage in the Atlantic Ocean for $250,000 and was only the third mission hosted by OceanGate Expeditions since initially being offered in 2021.

The Titan was reported to have reached 3,800 meters "as few as 13" of the 90 attempted dives, according to a four-page liability waiver signed by a would-be passenger, which referred to the submersible as "experimental" three times.

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